Mid-August Holiday in Versilia

Spend your Mid-August Holiday in Versilia at the beach or in the mountains, between a snack and some water balloon

Mid-August Holiday is a traditional celebration, which occurs on the 15th of august. The word comes from the Latin expression “feriae Augusti” (Augustus’ rest): it used to indicate a celebration instituted by the Emperor Augustus in the 18-century AD which, had to be added to the existing ancient festivities of the same month such as Consualia, to celebrate harvest and the end of the main agricultural works.

The ancient Mid-August Holiday also had the purpose to link the main august celebrations in order to supply an adequate rest period; it was essential after the deep efforts done during the previous weeks.
During this celebration, in all the Empire, people organized horse or donkey races and they were adorned with flowers.
Workers made their best wishes to their Lords and they got a tip from them: this habit deeply rooted and it became compulsory during the Renaissance.
In Italy, the day of this celebration corresponds to the day of the Assumption of Mary, the mother of Jesus, a festivity that gets inspiration from the principle of purification by means of water.

Specifically thanks to the recall of water, in Rome, all the Sundays of August people flooded Piazza Navona since the last century.
A kind of water balloons ante litteram!
Nowadays, tradition says you have to choose if to plan a trip in the countryside or in the mountains or if to go the beach where there are several parties of different kinds.

The popular and really Italian Mid-August Holiday trip was born after the twenty years of Fascism when the regime began to promote popular trips: the initiative gave the poorest social classes too the chance to visit Italian towns or to reach seaside or mountain resorts.
The offer was limited in 13, 14, 15 of August and it included the formulas “One day trip” within a radius of 50-100 kilometres and “Three day trip” within a radius of 100-200 kilometres.

This was the occasion, for the main part of Italian families, to see the sea, mountain and art centres with their own eyes.

Nevertheless, as these trips did not include any board and the tradition of packed lunch was soon born.

In this manner, since the twenties, escape from the city toward holiday destinations is a permanent feature of Mid-August Holiday, still respected nowadays in Versilia’s beaches.

Mid-August Holiday in Versilia
@ Pier Luca Mori 2024

Camaiore, Lucca (Italy)